Back to prior page

(Courtesy of Leo Pando)
Horse trainer Glenn H. Randall (1908 - 1992) at his Sherman Way training facility in North Hollywood.

(Courtesy of Roy Dillow)

Glenn Randall with his wranglers and famous equine borders in an undated photo - left to right are:
two unidentified horses
face of Dale Evans' Buttermilk
possibly Tex Ritter's White Flash
Rex Allen's Koko
Allan 'Rocky' Lane's Blackjack
far right is trainer Glenn Randall with Roy Rogers' Trigger Jr.

(Courtesy of Donn & Nancy Moyer)
Taking a break during the filming of the unbelievable chariot race in BEN-HUR (MGM, 1959) are, from L-to-R, horse trainer Glenn Randall, stuntman / second unit director Yakima Canutt in the chariot, and Charlton Heston on the far right.

Not shown is Andrew Marton who shared second unit director credit with Yakima Canutt.

All the horse and chariot action were Canutt's and Randall's. All the camera work was Marton's.

After production ended on BEN-HUR, Glenn Randall toured with the horses featured in the film.

This shot was taken in the back lot of NBC where Roy Rogers and Dale Evans were hosting their weekly 'Chevy Show'. Randall and the white team appeared circa 1959 to promote the film and his tour.

Rogers knew how to drive a chariot and did so in THE LIGHTS OF OLD SANTA FE (Republic, 1944) (and the sequence was more than likely staged by Yakima Canutt).

(Courtesy of Roy Dillow)

(Courtesy of Jim Snyder)
13 year old Jim Snyder, who worked for Glenn Randall in the summer of 1957, standing in the doorway of Roy Rogers' horse van (the photo was taken with a Kodak Brownie camera).

To his left (at the front of the van) there was a small dressing / sleeping room which held boxes of 8" x 10" publicity photos.

Leo Pando is an expert on Roy Rogers and his many Triggers and authored the wonderful Trigger - The Lives and Legend of Roy Rogers' Palomino - second edition (McFarland, 2019).

Leo recently connected with Jim Snyder and Jim is the source for the following text on the Glenn Randall Ranch and its occupants when it was in North Hollywood some seven decades ago. Thank you Jim for your time, memories and generosity.

Jim Snyder lucked into every young buckaroo's dream job when he was 13, working with legendary horse trainer Glenn Randall. Jim's mother worked next door to Randall's training facility and would sometimes visit on her lunch hour. On one occasion she mentioned her son and hoped he could find something to keep him busy over the summer months. Randall asked if Jim might be interested in working as a stable boy. The job included filling the water troughs, feeding and currying horses and cleaning stalls and changing straw. He would be shoveling manure onto the bed of a 1953 GMC pickup (which Jim would learn how to drive around the lot). He worked eight hours a day, five days a week for $25. Jim thought he was the luckiest kid on earth - the year was 1957.

The Glenn Randall Stables were located in North Hollywood in the San Fernando Valley.

Horse trainer Glenn Randall at his stables in North Hollywood.Horse trainer Glenn Randall at his stables in North Hollywood.
11 Jan 1960, Monday Valley Times (North Hollywood, California) from
(A large and clear image of this "Hub of Activity" newspaper photo is available - see links below.)

The lot was about a block west of where the Hollywood Freeway now crosses Sherman Way (the address was 12537, Quonset training arena still stands). The left side of the property line remains the same. The DMV Smog and Auto Repair and another building between the arena and north property line are now set in the middle of the original stable grounds. The right property line extended to 12516 Sherman Way. The north boundary line ran west to east between all the properties. Beyond the north boundary line there were open fields and a few dairy farms. The main office was set between the arena and the 12516 property.

The stalls were on the east and west side of the arena and corrals on the Sherman Way street side. They housed Roy Rogers' Liberty Horses (owned by Randall). On the east side, Gene Autry's Shetland ponies (his answer to Roy Rogers' Liberty Horses) were stabled (as well as the Red Pony from the movie inspired by John Steinbeck's novel). The office was in the front part of the main barn, the stalls ran north to south behind it. The lot included a two story building for props, training equipment, a buckboard, a harness racing rig, a stagecoach and a chariot (Randall trained the horses for the chariot race sequence in the 1959 movie BEN-HUR). The tack room was on the first floor and housed Roy Roger's famous saddle. The upstairs included an apartment for clients and a room for costumes and props.

Along Sherman Way there were other stables, one home to the Lone Ranger's Silver and Tonto's pinto Scout. The cowboy was king and many a movie and TV show required horses. Glenn Randall was very busy during his peak years. His commitment was 24/7. Horses are that way.

Besides Trigger, Trigger Jr., Little Trigger, and Buttermilk, Randall also stabled and trained Gene Autry's Champion, Rex Allen's Koko, and Zorro's Tornado and Phantom. Jim Snyder remembered two celebrities visiting the stable that special summer of 1957. Gene Autry came in to practice Champion's routines and the rotund Henry Calvin ('Sergeant Garcia' from Walt Disney's Zorro television show) showed up for horseback riding lessons (he used a draft horse named Pumpkin).

Little Trigger had a reputation for being spirited. One day Jim took him from his stall for grooming. The palomino bolted past the doorway, reared up and pulled the lead rope out of Jim's hands. The golden stud found his way off the lot and down the railroad tracks behind the stables (they were located along the north side of Sherman Way running west northwest to east southeast). Stable wranglers were able to corral the horse. After that, Jim was told to groom the mischievous stallion in his stall.

The Glenn Randall Stables were eventually moved to Newhall, California. Trigger was retired to Roy Rogers' ranch in Chatsworth in 1957. By the late 1950s the Hollywood heyday of the cowboy and his horse had peaked.

Jim Snyder was lucky to be a small part in a beloved genre that we'll not see the like of again.

Leo Pando
September, 2022


Google Streetview has current photos of Randall's Sherman Way location:

An auto repair shop is at 12525 Sherman Way:

Quonset training building at 12537 Sherman Way is a tile and stone dealer:

In 1989, Glenn Randall was inducted to the Rodeo Hall of Fame at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma:

In 1993, Glenn Randall was inducted to the ProRodeo Hall of Fame, Colorado Springs, Colorado:

Glenn Randall passed away May 5, 1992 from cancer at his Newhall, California home. Death notice in the May 7, 1992 Los Angeles Times newspaper:

There's a clear and sharp version of that poor quality 1960 "Hub of Activity" newspaper photo shown above:

Photo at the Los Angeles Public Library, Valley Times newspaper Photo Collection. Use the slider at the top of the page to increase image size:

Photo is one of many in a full page article on Randall In the January 11, 1960 North Hollywood Valley Times newspaper. Click on the box labeled "View the Full Page":

Thanks to Jim Snyder for this great layout of the Randall stables in North Hollywood.

(Courtesy of Jim Snyder)

Back to prior page